For some, summer begins when the weather gets warmer or the moment the bell rings on the last day of school. For hundreds of live music lovers, however, it starts tonight at the summer season's ppening song of Concerts in the Park.
The Cooltones will serenade the still-cool season with big band jazz and swing starting at 7 p.m. Favorite bands and several new ones--including The Corvairs, Hurricane, Rock Explosion and Cocktail Monkeys--will take the stage at Lions Wayside Park at First and Neal streets Friday nights through Sept. 4.
Another band will also join the lineup at the annual Fourth of July celebration, this year on a Saturday, featuring music from the Pleasanton Community Concert Band from noon to 1:30 p.m.
Alisha Perdue is the concert coordinator for the Pleasanton Downtown Association who sponsors the series along with the Pleasanton Weekly, Zzippes, the city of Pleasanton and several area merchants.
"These concerts are sponsored by our membership, downtown merchants and association members," she said. "Coming to the concerts is one way of supporting them."
Bringing attention--and local dollars--to the area is part of a push to bolster Pleasanton businesses and the community it creates. Last year's concerts were drawing crowds as big as 1,500, and it's easy to see why: the concerts are free and people of all ages can enjoy them.
These events are so popular, in fact, that people like to stake their spot on the grass with a blanket hours before show time. Perdue said this practice is fine as long as it's not done before Friday and people don't use tarps and rocks, which can damage the grass.
"The concerts have been a Pleasanton staple for a very long time," Perdue added. "People have dinner downtown or grab it to go. Parents bring their kids and older folks come as well."
Anyone looking for what's going on downtown, as well as coupons and specials from various merchants, can find out more information at the PDA table during the concert.
There are also prizes to be won in the raffle, which starts tonight. Entry forms can be found on p. 21 in today's print edition of the Pleasanton Weekly and on each Friday through Sept. 4. Winners must be present to claim their prize at the end of the concert around 8:30 p.m.